GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2017

H 3

HOUSE BILL 467

Second Edition Engrossed 4/10/17

Senate Agriculture/Environment/Natural Resources Committee Substitute Adopted 4/25/17

 

Short Title: Agriculture and Forestry Nuisance Remedies.

(Public)

Sponsors:

 

Referred to:

 

March 27, 2017

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT TO CLARIFY thE REMEDIES AVAILABLE IN PRIvATE NUISANCE ACTIONS AGAINSt AGRiCULTURAL AND FORESTRY OPERATIONS.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. Article 57 of Chapter 106 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:

" 106‑702. Limitations on private nuisance actions against agricultural and forestry operations.

(a) The compensatory damages that may be awarded to a plaintiff for a private nuisance action where the alleged nuisance emanated from an agricultural or forestry operation shall be as follows:

(1) If the nuisance is a permanent nuisance, compensatory damages shall be measured by the reduction in the fair market value of the plaintiff's property caused by the nuisance, but not to exceed the fair market value of the property.

(2) If the nuisance is a temporary nuisance, compensatory damages shall be limited to the diminution of the fair rental value of the plaintiff's property caused by the nuisance.

(b) If any plaintiff or plaintiff's successor in interest brings a subsequent private nuisance action against any agricultural or forestry operation, the combined recovery from all such actions shall not exceed the fair market value of his or her property. This limitation applies regardless of whether the subsequent action or actions were brought against a different defendant than the preceding action or actions.

(c) This Article shall apply to any private nuisance claim brought against any party based on that party's contractual or business relationship with an agricultural or forestry operation.

(d) This Article does not apply to any cause of action brought against an agricultural or forestry operation for negligence, trespass, personal injury, strict liability, or other cause of action for tort liability other than nuisance, nor does this Article prohibit or limit any request for injunctive relief or punitive damages that are otherwise available."

SECTION 2.(a) This act is effective when it becomes law and applies to causes of action commenced or brought on or after that date.

SECTION 2.(b) If any section or provision of this act is declared unconstitutional or invalid by the courts, it does not affect the validity of this act as a whole or any part other than the part declared to be unconstitutional or invalid.